When I was a kid of eleven, I took the bus to town in the morning, got off before the bus station and walked for fifteen minutes up hill through the streets to school. I did this every school day for seven years.
There was a small cut through alleyway paved with cobblestones that made the journey a little shorter. On the right hand side of this tiny ancient road were old buildings with bay fronted windows, now housing various solicitors.
I memorised the names written in fancy gold letters on the windows and chanted them to myself over and over as a sort of march to help me up the hill, in the cold, to school.
Caterapell and Moxon
Fowlie and Opie
Green, Williamson and Way
In winter long icicles hung from each window ledge, begging to be snapped off, if you could. Some were very thick and more than my cold little hands could manage, but most broke off with a satisfying crack. Then I’d carry on my walk, twisting the melting icicle round in my hands, chanting my mantra.
I wonder if they still stand today: these buildings from a by-gone era?